Monday, September 17, 2012

Operational Energy Meet Ups: Flock of Eagles Lead Army OE Effort

NOT a Flock of Eagles
This past February, the U.S. Army Rapid Equipping Force (REF) sponsored an operational energy conference at Arizona State University.  Almost all of the players in the Army appeared and described their various programs. The major teams represented were the Operations (REF), Acquisition (PM, Mobile Electric Power and others), Logistics (G4), and Training and Doctrine (Brigade Modernization Command).  The only thing missing were the folks that write the JCIDS documents that articulate the capabilities required of the force regarding operational energy.   Now that problem has been addressed.  If you need a refresher on the Joint Capabilities Integration and Development System (JCIDS), review this post.

The Combined Arms Support Command (CASCOM) has let a one year contract to produce the appropriate Capability Development Documents and Capability Production Documents.  Using the Army Operational Energy Campaign Plan (AOECP) and draft Initial Capabilities Document (ICD) the team will have 12 months to define requirements for Army Operational Energy for the next couple of decades.  The effort is being led by COL Bruce B. McPeak, the Director of Material Systems at CASCOM, and the newest member of the OE “Flock of Eagles”.

 If you are interested in learning more about the “Flock”, head over to the Military Mobile Power Summit at the Mary M. Gates Learning Center, Alexandria VA., 19-20 September.  You will get to hear from the Navy, Marines and Army as well as DOE.  In addition to COL McPeak, COLs Newell (REF), Roege (G4), Hill (ASA,IE&E) and Cummings (represented by LTC Foster, PM-MEP) will present.  These five Colonels represent the Army’s uniformed brain trust on operational energy.  Any time you put five Colonels on a problem, you should expect rapid solutions.  The Army is leading in experimenting and researching, but until the JCIDS documents get done, it is just tinkering at the margins.  Requirements come from the JCIDS process and Requirements drive Acquisition.  If any readers attend, please give me a SitRep.  You can register for the event at- http://mobilepower.dsigroup.org/ or contact Lisa Madison at 1-347-732-5326 for more information or to register.

The USMC, which somehow seems to get by with just one Colonel, has released the data collected on energy use in SW Afghanistan.  According to the release, “This report is focused on three distinct topics.  First, the results of the recent Expeditionary Energy Office metering efforts in RC(SW), Afghanistan.  Second, presenting the lessons learned from the ExFOB 2010-2 Extended User Evaluation (EUE) focused on efficient powering and cooling of Command Operations Centers (COCs).  Lastly, presenting an explanation of variable power demand and how probability profiles can be used to understand the impact of USMC operating procedures on fuel consumption. As soon as the report is available, I will post a link.

Finally, from the USMC, the next ExFOB or BYOT (bring your own toys) is ready to go down at Camp Pendleton, Calif., Sept 17-21.  The Marine Corps' Experimental Forward Operating Base (ExFOB) process is designed to identify and evaluate commercial technologies that can increase the self-sufficiency of expeditionary forces.  ExFOB will host invited vendors to demonstrate their technologies. Fourteen companies will pay their way into the ExFOB in order to  demonstrate 19 advanced thermal efficiency technologies that provide energy efficient heating and cooling of personnel, bulk water, electronics, vehicles, and shelters.  If the Leathernecks like something, maybe they will buy a few for follow on deployment and testing.  The suite of technology, India Company 3/5 Marines tried out in late 2010 resulted in a $25M purchase for the rest of the Corps.  As in all the experimentation that is going on, significant upfront investment is required of industry, but the potential pay back maybe worth that investment. 

The challenge for small business is that most of the OE experimentation requires vendors to bring their gear to these events, at their own cost, in hopes of a follow on purchase.  The only folks with the resources available to make the follow on purchases are the REF and USMC Expeditionary Energy Office.  If you are trying to impress someone, impress them.  Dan Nolan

5 comments:

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renewable energy said...

A huge step to extend help for those people who are in need. Good job for the Flock of Eagles.

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